Building Climate Resiliency into your Aquatic Restoration Project

2022 Webinar #3

This workshop focuses on case studies that consider climate change in implementing their aquatic restoration projects.

AIR DATE: Wednesday, February 16

PRESENTATION 1: Wetland Rehabilitation and Management at the CVWMA: Lessons from the past and present
PRESENTER: Julia Shewan, B.S., RPBio, Wildlife Biologist, Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area
DESCRIPTION: Back in the 1970s, wetlands on the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area (CVWMA) were “created” by isolating a part of the valley bottom from the Kootenay River floodplain using dikes and natural levees to “build” the wetlands we see today. Along with installed water control and pumping infrastructure, managers can respond to many changing climate conditions to maintain the existing wetland habitats, though climate extremes pose a challenge to this unique ecosystem. Julia Shewan will discuss some recent wetland restoration activities on the CVWMA and illustrate how these activities might help alleviate potential management issues with our changing climate, based on lessons learned over time.

PRESENTATION 2: Building Climate Resiliency into Aquatic Restoration Projects using examples from the Columbia Wetlands
PRESENTER: Dr. Suzanne Bayley, President, Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners
DESCRIPTION: Dr. Bayley will provide examples that the Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners and the Shuswap Indian Band’s Columbia Headwaters Aquatic Restoration Strategy (CHARS) is using to build climate adaptation and resilience into their projects. A key to their success is to focus on the hydrologic and sedimentary processes that control the system. Dr. Bayley will show examples of the on-the-ground approaches they are using to understand the system, restore ecosystems, mitigate climate impacts and build resilience in streams and wetlands in the Columbia Valley.

Julia Shewan is a wildlife biologist working for the Creston Valley Wildlife Management Area (CVWMA). Her primary area of expertise is in avian ecology, but she’s dabbled in nearly all of the wildlife arts over the years. Since coming to the CVWMA three years ago, she’s headed up several monitoring programs geared at understanding the importance of the wetland ecosystems for key wildlife groups, including sensitive and at-risk species. During that time, she’s also learned a lot about how these unique wetlands are managed for a variety of wildlife, human, and ecological values.

Dr. Suzanne Bayley is President of the Columbia Wetlands Stewardship Partners, a stakeholder group in Columbia Valley dedicated to protecting and wisely using the Columbia Wetlands. She is a retired Professor of Ecology at the University of Alberta. Her research focused on the ecology and management of wetlands and shallow lakes, and she continues to apply an ecological approach to enhancing the ecological values, health and processes of the Columbia Wetlands ecosystem.